Protect Your Child from the Flu

As a parent, safeguarding your child’s health is a top priority. Influenza (the flu) can be very dangerous for children. Their bodies are unable to fight off the flu like adults. Each year, thousands of children are hospitalized, and some children die from this contagious virus.*

What are symptoms of the flu?

Common symptoms include:
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose
  • Tiredness
  • Cough

How does the flu spread?

When people with the flu cough, sneeze, and talk, droplets from their mouth and nose travel through the air. These droplets can land in the mouths and noses of those that are close by. You can also get the flu by touching something that has the flu virus on it and then touching your mouth, eyes or nose.

How can the flu be prevented?

  1. Have all family members 6 months and older get the flu vaccine! Contact your doctor to learn about vaccine choices.
  2. Teach children to wash their hands often. Everyone should wash his or her hands after using the bathroom, after coughing or sneezing, and before eating. Parents and childcare providers should wash the hands of children who can’t wash them on their own.
  3. Give school-age children alcohol-based sanitizer to keep in their desk to use when they can’t use soap and water. Remind them to use it before eating snacks and after using items that other children use.
  4. Never share cups, spoons, or forks with anyone.
  5. Teach children to keep their hands away from their eyes, nose and mouth.
  6. Cough and sneeze into a tissue or the upper arm if needed.
  7. Clean and disinfect objects in the home that could have the flu virus on them.

What if your child gets the flu?

Your child should stay home from school and daycare until they are without fever for at least 24 hours without using fever-reducing medicines. Call your child’s doctor if your child:

  • Has a history of asthma, diabetes and disorders of the brain or nervous system
  • Is younger than 2 years old
  • Has a high fever or a fever with a rash
  • Has trouble breathing
  • Has bluish skin color
  • Seems confused

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